“How the Culture Wars Shrink Both Religion and Reason”

This was, for many years, effectively the motto of FARMS and of its successor organization, the Maxwell Institute.

   I don't believe that I've called attention yet to this significant and provocative piece by my friend and colleague Professor Ralph Hancock: http://www.ldsmag.com/article/1/13976 Well, on second thought, I guess I have.   … [Read more...]

“How Can I Do This Great Wickedness?”

Joseph and the wife of Potiphar (Click to enlarge.  Click again to enlarge still further.)

   Jeff Bradshaw, Craig Foster, and Martin Tanner discuss Lesson 11 in the 2014 Gospel Doctrine manual in this, the sixty-first (61st) scripture roundtable posted by The Interpreter Foundation: http://www.mormoninterpreter.com/scripture-roundtable-61-old-testament-gospel-doctrine-lesson-11-how-can-i-do-this-great-wickedness/ Lesson 11 treats Genesis 34-35, 37, and 39.   … [Read more...]

Justina Pelletier

Justina and her parents

  I haven't been following this case closely, but I'm beginning to pay attention. It's difficult, thus far, to see it as other than an outrage.  On several levels: http://www.theblaze.com/news/justina-pelletier/   … [Read more...]

“Birthright Blessings, Marriage in the Covenant”

"Rebekah at the Well," by Michael Deas

  The Interpreter Foundation is pleased to present its sixtieth (60th) scripture roundtable: http://www.mormoninterpreter.com/scripture-roundtable-60-old-testament-gospel-doctrine-lesson-10-birthright-blessings-marriage-in-the-covenant/ Featuring Jeff Bradshaw, Andrew Smith, Martin Tanner, and Bruce Webster, the discussion focuses on Genesis 24-29, on Lesson #10 in the 2014 Gospel Doctrine manual.   … [Read more...]

A very sad day

Harold Ramis in "Ghosbusters." He was certainly more important, though, as a writer and director.

  Harold Ramis has died. http://www.chicagotribune.com/entertainment/chi-harold-ramis-dead-20140224,0,2259309.story Ghostbusters, Groundhog Day, Caddyshack, Analyze This, National Lampoon's Vacation, and on and on. What a loss.   … [Read more...]

“Toward the Unknown Region”

A tropical sunrise (Click to enlarge.  Click again to enlarge further.)

  Again, while driving from Bountiful to Orem yesterday morning,  I listened to a performance on KBYU-FM of Toward the Unknown Region, by Ralph Vaughan Williams.  This was, apparently, his first real "hit." It's a setting for Walt Whitman's "Darest thou now, O Soul," from Leaves of Grass: Darest thou now, O Soul,Walk out with me toward the Unknown Region,Where neither ground is for the feet, nor any path to follow? No map t … [Read more...]

“The Lady Vanishes”

From "The Lady Vanishes" (1938) (Click to enlarge.  Click again to enlarge further.)

  We just watched Alfred Hitchcock's 1938 film The Lady Vanishes.  The second-to-the-last of his English films.  Then he moved to Hollywood, where, for what it's worth, I once ran into him. I'm a Hitchcock fan, but I'd never seen it before.  It's not, perhaps, one of his greatest, and it's definitely an early bit of low-tech movie-making, but it's really fun. And, in view of what was actually happening in Europe in 1938 (and what would happen in 19 … [Read more...]

“The Early Witnesses of Christ’s Resurrection”

I've been thrilling audiences like this one around the world for many years. (Photo taken at a previous fireside.)

  Just in case anybody is interested at all, I'll be speaking for about forty-five minutes tonight (Sunday, 23 February 23) at 7:30 pm at a stake center located at 1315 E. 900 S., Provo.  The principal intended audience is single adults from all over Utah County, but nobody will be checking for age or marital status at the door.   … [Read more...]